Renewed Appreciation

In Family, Inspiration and Motivation, Life Lessons, Pursuit of Happiness on January 21, 2010 at 11:33 am

Waking up in the middle of the night, and not being able to fall back asleep, is something that I’ve grown accustomed to.  When this happens, I usually end up watching whatever movie I can find on cable.  I’ve noticed lately, that many of the movies take place in New York City.  I realize that it has probably always been that way, but I am just more aware of it now because I live so far away, and it is a reminder of home.

I knew that we would miss things about New York when we decided to relocate, but I never expected New York City to be one of them.  Even though I truly believe that it is the greatest city in the world, I lost my love for the city after 9/11.

Immediately following 9/11, the city didn’t feel safe to me anymore.  I felt very vulnerable just waiting for the next attack.  Seeing military personnel dressed in camouflage and carrying machine guns made the city (that I once loved) feel like the Middle East.  The fact that I had to spend over two hours every day commuting back and forth made the city that much less appealing.

As a kid, my family and I always went to New York City.  My parents both grew up there and my grandmother lived there her entire life.  It was a different place back then.  It was always crowded, but not as crowded as it is today.  Parking was always a hassle, but in recent years, it has become a tedious chore to find a parking spot.  It wasn’t always the cleanest place in the world, but it seems to have gotten dirtier over the years (with the exception of Times Square, which is now family-friendly).

In spite of all of the negatives, New York City still has an undeniable appeal to me.  I just didn’t realize how much I appreciated it until I was nearly 2000 miles away from it.  As I watch various movies in the middle of the night, there is a comfort in seeing the streets and landmarks that give me a sense of home.  Even though I wasn’t frequenting the city very often before we relocated, just knowing that I could if I wanted to was comforting.  As the saying goes “you don’t know what you’ve got ‘til it’s gone.”

When I do visit New York City again, I will be doing so with a renewed appreciation of what the city has to offer.   As the band Journey sang, in their song “Faithfully”… “I get the joy of rediscovering you.” The lyrics were written to a woman, but this is how I feel about going back to New York City.  My visit won’t come until the summer, so until then, I’ll have to settle for experiencing the city through late-night movies.  On the bright side, at least I’ve found one positive to insomnia!

  1. Where’s the “like” button I’ve goten so used to on Facebook? You can talk to people you miss anytime, but you can’t talk to familiarity and the love of roots!!

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